Things to do in New York City for 9/11

Can you believe it has now been 18 years since the bombing of the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001. I was literally in high school when this tragic event took place and to be honest, up until going to New York City and hearing stories from those who were there- I had very little of the information correct.

Typically, as tourist, we’re always on the lookout for things to do nearby!

Since we were spending time in New York with family- finding things to do in New York City was now a pressing issue! The usual attractions would include the Lincoln Center, Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Statue of Liberty, a Broadway show, The Museum of Natural History, Coney Island, Central Park and of course Times Square! And while we did many of those…

But this trip was a little different. 

It was the end of summer and we thought it would be the perfect opportunity to teach ourselves and more importantly our kids about what happened in our country on September 11th, 2001!

We had the day planned and the details all lined up for a fun time full of recent history and amazing points of interest anyone visiting New York should add to their bucket list. We were heading to the former Ground Zero! Our eyes were set on visiting the 9/11 Memorial, One World Observatory & the 9/11 Tribute Museum.

RV Camping Close to New York City & The Ferry

If you stay at the Liberty Harbor RV Park, which is literally as close as you can get to all the fun things to do in NYC,  you’re day will start similar to ours with a quick drive over to Liberty State Park, where you can catch a quick ferry into New York!

Liberty Harbor RV Park is a little more than a parking lot, but it does offer urban camping right outside the big city! With just 50 water/electric sites and an on-site dump station, RVers pay a high price for convenience.

The New York Waterway ferry runs Monday – Friday and is a short 5-7 minute ride across the Hudson River to Pier 11 (right by Wall Street). You have the option to sit up at the top on a nice day or down below where you can get out of the cold or rain.

You know we chose the top…

It’s an open air deck, where you can catch some wind in your hair as you take in the great views of the One World Observatory, beautiful boats on the water, historic buildings and just the awesomeness of being in New York!

We exited the ferry at the second stop, (there are only 3) which was the Financial District and lets you off right at the tip of Wall Street in heart of some great shopping and dining options!

A short walk took us through a nice mall with great shopping options and a variety of high-end stores, a bistro marketplace, restaurants and other awesome adventures that people without 4 kids in tow would really enjoy!

We didn’t stop. We just walked through to take advantage of the air conditioning and the ATM, before exiting on the opposite side where access to our attractions were just right across the street!

Our first stop was the One World Observatory!

OneWorld Observatory

One World Observatory sits inside Tower One at the new World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan. It is the tallest building in the Western hemisphere and offers 360-degree views of the city!

Technically it’s the 6th tallest building in the world, which is why taking the lightning fast elevator ride up 102 floors in just 47 seconds is one of the highlights our family really enjoyed! Usually we aren’t too keen on glass elevators that shoot to the sky, but this one was different as you can imagine.

It’s the only way to get to the top for guests wanting a 360-degree view of the city and your ride is made comfortable with a fast-moving slide show to keep your mind wandering and your stomach still…

Things to do in NYC at One World Observatory

Ride to the Top:

The One World Observatory has Skypod Elevators that reach the 102ndfloor in less than 60 seconds. It is an all glass elevator that is meant to show you the evolution of New York City from undeveloped land to today’s skyscrapers.

A great way to spend your time in the elevator- the video was a n amazing start to our visit!

Sky Portal:

This is a must visit that can be scary for some but exhilarating for most of us. It is a circular glass disk on the 100thfloor that allows you to see the streets on the ground in high definition. It was a little freaky for me, but the kids thought it was amazing!

Interactive Channels:

There are two interactive channels that allow you to virtually explore New York City. Included are –

  • The Skyview Channel: This offers virtual helicopter rides to let you see over all of New York City
  • The Restaurant Channel: Gives you virtual information to all of the top restaurants, even the ones most New Yorkers don’t know about.

Forever Theatre:

This theatre gives a surround sound audio visual into the One World Trade Center. You can hear the actual voices of those who helped build the center, as well as see a scenic view of New York’s skyline accompanied by the sounds of the ocean.

How much is One World Observatory? 


  1. General Admission – $35.00
  2. Upgraded Experience – $45.00 which includes:

– Priority Lane: Security, Elevator, and Exit

– Digital Skyline Guide

  1. Experience the Best – $55.00 – which indludes:

– Priority Lane: Security, Elevator, and Exit

– Digital Skyline Guide

– Flexible Arrival on Selected Day

– $15 to Drink or Shop

Where is One World Observatory Located? 

One World Trade Center

117 West Street

New York, NY 10007

What Days & Times is One World Observatory Open? 

Everyday – 9:00AM to 9:00PM




9/11 Memorial & Museum in NYC

The 9/11 Memorial & Museum is a two-part attraction that focuses on the events of September 11th.

It has interactive exhibits, memories, artifacts, beauty and much more for those who want to pay tribute to this piece of our nation’s history.

The museum is the United State’s principal institution that explores the cause of 9/11, the actual 9/11 attacks and the aftermath, including present day impacts. The museum’s collection includes over 10,000 artifacts inside the museum, and about 40,000 print and digital photographs.

It’s overwhelming to see the nearly 3,000 names inscribed in bonze, of the innocent men, women and children who were killed in the attacks of September 11th, 2001 as well as February 26, 1993 at the two memorial pools that now sit on about 8 of the 16 acres of the former World Trade Center complex.

The memorial is actually a set of twin fountains that drop down into reflecting pools set inside the space that once held the Twin Towers. They are currently the largest manmade waterfalls in North America!

The North Pool includes the names of those that were lost inside the World Trade Center North, on Flight 11 and during the events on Feb. 26 1993. The South Pool includes the names of those lost in the World Trade Center South, the First Responders, on Flight 175, Flight 77 and Flight 93, as well as those who lost their lives at the Pentagon.

We walked around one entire pool allowing the kids time to read the names and take in the magnitude of emotions standing in this space floods into your mind. Humbling is literally the onward that best describes this one moment, the activities we participated in and just the entire day.

Free to the public and open daily from 7:30am-9pm, we thought this was the perfect Segway from our fun time at the observatory, into lunch and then to the Tribute Museum.

We kind of meandered around the grounds a bit and scouted an open spot to take a break, sit down and eat our lunch. Which I was glade did, the timing was perfect.

Things to do in NYC at the 9/11 Memorial & Museum

The Historical Exhibition:

This is one of the two core exhibits at the museum. This exhibit has three major parts focusing on three major days – the day before 9/11, the day of 9/11, and the day after 9/11. This exhibit is very important because it encompasses the entire unraveling of 9/11, not just the actual incident. This exhibit dives into the events that built up to 9/11, that actual story of Flight 93, and the aftermath of the tragedy the following day.

The Memorial Exhibition:

The Memoriam: This is the other of the two core exhibits. The Memoriam is very important because it rejoices those that we lost. It remembers all of the lives taken on September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993.


A Portrait of the Mohawk Ironworker at the World Trade Center: This exhibition tells the story of how the Mohawk ironworks built the Twin Towers, abetted rescue and recovery operations at Ground Zero, and drove to rebuild the World Trade Center following the 9/11 attacks.

Witness at Ground Zero:

This exhibit is a giant archive of the aftermath pictures from 9/11. The pictures are dated from a span of September 12, 2011 to September 16, 2001. The are more than 500 hundred pictures displayed.

Reflecting on 9/11:

This is a cool feature at this museum because it is interactive. This is a recording studio in the museum that lets visitors verbally respond to questions about how 9/11 affected their lives.

Rebirth at Ground Zero:

This a panoramic media that features time-lapse footage from the actual Ground Zero, as well as recorded interviews.

How much is the 9/11 Memorial & Museum?

  Adult Youth (7-12) Young Adult (13-17) Senior (65+) College Student U.S. Veteran
Museum Admission $26 $15 $20 $20 $20 $18
Museum Admission + Museum Tour $46 $35 $40 $40 $40 $38
Museum Admission + Memorial Tour $41 $30 $35 $35 $35 $33
The memorial is open to the public for free every day.

The 9/11 Memorial also offers free admission for certain groups:

  • 9/11 Rescue and Recovery Workers
  • Active/Retired U.S. Military
  • 9/11 Victim Family Members

Aside from free admission, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum pay special attention to the family members of those lost in the tragedy. There is a dedicated phone line for these families that you can call to plan your visit.

You can also contribute to the memorial with belongings or stories from your loved one that were lost. There is also a dedicated Family Room in the museum that you can visit on your trip.

After 5:00 PM on Tuesday – Admission is free for everyone! These free admission tickets are distributed by “first come first serve” basis. Once they have ran out, normal admission fees apply.

What Days & Times is the 9/11 Memorial & Museum open?

Memorial: Open Daily 7:30AM to 9:00PM

Museum: Sunday to Thursday 9:00AM to 8:00PM

Friday to Saturday 9:00AM to 9:00PM

Where is the 9/11 Memorial & Museum located?

180 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007

9/11 Memorial & Museum Contact Info




9/11 Tribute Museum in New York City

The 9/11 Tribute Museum was formerly known as the 9/11 Tribute Center. This museum is unique in the fact that it gives information on 9/11 through personal accounts and experiences of those who were affected by 9/11. This includes family members of those we lost, survivors, the rescue and recovery team, and even those who were near the area when 9/11 occurred.

It uses interviews, personal objects, film, etc. to depict these actual encounters and stories.

We were so lucky to be invited to take a personal tour with the lead curator during our trip. Having her guide our family through the events that took place, as well as what it was like in the immediate aftermath was moving to say the least.

Things to do in NYC at the 9/11 Tribute Museum

Women Rebuilding the World Trade Center:

This exhibit is special as it remembers 9/11 and celebrates Women’s History Month. The Museum partnered with Women’s City Club of New York to share the stories of the women who have participated in helping to rebuild the World Trade Center.

It tells of women who advocated for the needs of people who suffered, women who helped engineer sustainable infrastructure for the rebuild, women who helped bring the community back together, and many more.

February 26, 1993 – World Trade Center Bombing:

This exhibit tells the story of the real first part of 9/11, the first attack to the World Trade Center which was related to 9/11. This one is very important to visitors. It is an exhibit that truly gives information. Many younger people don’t know much about the February 26 bombing, but this exhibit will teach you with facts, live footage and firsthand accounts.

Tribute 2.0:

Includes live and physical exhibits that tell the story of 9/11 in a new way.

-Lower Manhattan Where the World Meets: Information about lower Manhattan and how it serves as the center of global trade in goods, services, and ideas!

-September 11, 2001: Video footage from September 11th showing the attacks and events of the day.

-Response & Recovery: A detailed account of how the community pulled together by putting personal differences aside.

-Rebuilding & Remembering: Remembering the 9/11 attacks and rebuilding a community with personal journeys and healing!

How Much is the 9/11 Tribute Museum?

  Adult Uniformed Service Students Seniors (60+) Children (8-12)
Gallery Admission $15 $10 $10 $10 $5
Gallery Admission + Guided Walking Tour $35 $25 $35 $35 $20

What Days & Times is the 9/11 Tribute Museum Open?

Monday-Saturday: 10:00AM to 6:00PM

Sunday: 10:00AM to 5:00PM

Where is the 9/11 Tribute Museum located?

 92 Greenwich Street

New York, NY 10006

Contact Information:




Ground Zero Museum Workshop 

The Ground Zero Museum Workshop is a real life depiction of “inside Ground Zero.” It is a safe way to show the severity of Ground Zero for those who were there.

You get to see Ground Zero from the eyes of the official photographer. You get to see, touch, and listen to many interactive pieces throughout the museum. This museum is a kid friendly activity in New York, making it the number one option for parents to educate their kids.

Available exhibits/features

Ground Zero Museum Workshop is a museum that focuses on the images and artifacts from the “Recovery at Ground Zero.” It is a kid friendly museum that offers 2 hour tours daily. It is filled with images, trinkets, samples, etc. from the nine month period after 9/11.

Admission Information & Pricing

  Adults (12+) Children (4-12) Seniors (65+)
Admission $25 $19 $19


Monday: CLOSED

Tuesday: CLOSED

Wednesday-Sunday: 11:00AM to 3:00PM


420 West 14th Street, Floor 2
New York, New York USA




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